Fishing the NL East: Who Will Win the Division?


Sep 29, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Tim Hudson (15) talks to fans and his team following the last game of the regular season against the Philadelphia Phillies at Turner Field. The Braves won 12-5. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Liles-USA TODAY Sports

With us being done with the heavy lifting of the off-season, I think it’s a fair time to try and see how the division will fare in 2014.

The Braves have to been seen as the early favorites in the division, despite having another short post-season run. Until they are defeated, they are still the NL East Champs. The Nationals seem to be improved on paper, but that was the case before they turned in a poor 2013 season. The Phillies should take a step back and I’d expect the Mets and Marlins to improve in 2014.

How do you guys see the NL East shaping up next season? Vote on the poll below and drop a comment with your thoughts:

Now let’s take a look at the latest news around the National League East.

Atlanta Braves

Ryan Doumit, Bench Bat (and hopefully nothing more) | Tomahawk Take

I start this by applauding and their daily work.  In particular, they have exposed something of particular interest about our new, er…. Catcher…, Ryan Doumit.  But we’ll get back to that in a bit.

‘Tis The Season To Have An Atlanta Braves Offseason | Tomahawk Take

The 2013 offseason for the Atlanta Braves has been sort of a let down compared to the 2012 one. With the additions of both B.J. Upton and Justin Upton and the emergence of Evan Gattis in the Winter Leagues – not to mention Chris Johnson who was just a little addition to the Upton trade, CJ came up huge for the Braves and bringing back Jordan Schafer – fans were excited about the occurrences heading into 2013.

Sean Gilmartin, Not Ryan Doumit, Could Have Been Impetus For Latest Atlanta Braves Trade | ATL All Day

When the Atlanta Braves pulled the trigger on a trade to send 2011 1st-round draft pick Sean Gilmartin to the Minnesota Twins in exchange for catcher/outfielder Ryan Doumit, the first reaction for most people (and justifiably so) was to analyze Doumit’s potential role for the 2014 Braves.

Washington Nationals

Washington Nationals: Bryce Harper Fantasy Predictions | Fantasy Baseball Cracker Jacks

Going into 2014 there are a lot of players that are surrounded with question marks. In my opinion no player more so than Bryce Harper. For example:

Ryan Zimmerman: What To Do… | District on Deck

There has been a discussion for a little while now that Ryan Zimmerman can no longer play third base with consistency. I tend to agree with this statement. Zimmerman does have the most throwing errors since 2011. It isn’t just his arm that is an issue either, it is his range as well.

Washington Nationals: 200 Innings That Important? | District on Deck

I read an article last night that was about the Washington Nationals and view their starting rotation. The writer states that Stephen Strasburg is not a number one starter. He also states what he believes to be number one starter material per say. One of those requirements was innings pitched. He explains that to be eligible for awards you have to pitch a certain amount of innings, but why should it be that way?

Philadelphia Phillies

The Phillies Would Like the Orioles to Please Take Jonathan Papelbon | Call to the Pen

It is no secret that the Phillies are trying to trade Jonathan Papelbon. At this point they are all-but-begging teams to take the 32-year-old closer, who over the next three years is set to eat up a total of $39 million in payroll.

Player Review/Preview: Chase Utley | That Balls Outta Here

Considering how many games Chase Utley had missed in recent years, 2013 was a solid season for him. Most importantly, Utley was healthy as he had 476 at-bats over 131 games.

Potential Offseason Target: Ubaldo Jimenez | That Balls Outta Here

In 2010, Ubaldo Jimenez was one of the best pitchers in baseball. Despite pitching his home games in Colorado, he won 19 games, had a sparkling ERA of 2.88 and recorded 7.5 WAR. These numbers earned him a third place finish in the National League Cy Young Award voting.

New York Mets

New York Mets Should Trade For Chris Owings | Empire Writes Back

The New York Mets have been unsuccessful in trying to find an adequate shortstop to replace Jose Reyes for two seasons, but Arizona Diamondbacks’ shortstop-second baseman Chris Owings could be the answer to the Mets’ shortstop woes.

It Appears That Stephen Drew Has No Market: What Say You, Mets? | Rising Apple

It’s getting close to January, and there are still a bunch of big name (relatively speaking) free agents on the market. Of those who might be of interest to the Mets, Stephen Drew‘s name continues to pop up in the conversation.

Beltran Joins Yankees; Bitter Towards Mets | Rising Apple

This afternoon, Carlos Beltran’s dream of becoming a New York Yankee became official.